DEVOTION: Philippians 4:4-7
4 Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice. 5 Let your reasonableness be known to everyone. The Lord is at hand; 6 do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. 7 And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
Every time I read this I get a little bit something different out of it. Today as I was reading it, I was struck by how Paul seems to be telling us to stay positive and joyful. When I see the word "reasonableness" I think of someone who has a pleasant disposition, someone others like to be around, someone to whom people listen.
The NIV translates the word as "gentleness" which is a good word to use too.
You get the picture of one who has the Lord's will in mind and wants others to know the love of Jesus through his words and actions.
If you're always crabby, always divisive, always critical, no one is going to be around you, except for those who love misery.
Someone on Facebook said something like this the other day "Sometimes the best evangelism is telling people you're a Christian then NOT being a complete jerk."
I took that to heart. I haven't always been the most loving caring, gentle, or reasonable pastor (especially early on in my ministry). As I look back on my life, there are so many times that I wish I could take back when I was a complete jerk to people.
And so I take the passage from Philippians to heart as well and so should you! Over the years I have continued to resolve to let my gentleness and reasonableness be evident to all. I have become less judgmental. And I most certainly pray A LOT more, as I have come to realize more and more that God the Holy Spirit is the one who changes hearts and minds, not me.
So I encourage you to be gentle and reasonable, bring your requests to God, and the God off peace will guard your heart and mind in Christ Jesus!
Prayer: Lord, please keep molding me into the servant you want me to be, that through my gentleness and reasonableness you may change hearts and minds to believe in you. Amen.
Wed- Advent Supper 5:30; Advent Worship 6:30; Choir 7:15
Sat- Sunday school Christmas program practice 9-11; Little Lambs Christmas Program 3pm; Worship 5
Sun- Worship 8:30 and 11; Sunday school 9:45
Acolyte- Wed- John Pezold 8:30- Jacob Winn ; 11- Hailey Blechle
Ushers- Wed- Allan Dreyer, Lew Feldkamp, Kent Jacobsmeyer, Paul Klover; Sun- George, Gary, and ben Hoelscher, and Brent Davis
Altar- Set Up- Ruth Walters Clean up- Joanne Hachtel
Elders- Sat- Jim Rahn; 8:30- Don Turnure; 11- Steve McDowell
Greeters- 8:30- Dave and Linda Callies; 11- Steve and Sandy Robine
Lay readers- Sat- Jim Rahn 8:30- Jacob Nagel 11- Steve McDowell
Sat. Pianist- Tim Sherman
Organist- Wed. Rachel Fisher; Sun- Kathy Barrow
Projectionists: Sat. Pam Bueltmann 8:30- Terry McKenzie , 11- ?????
YESTERDAY'S BIBLE QUIZ: Who was Zephaniah? (Again, Pat King knocks it out of the park. I'm sure there was some googling involved, but that's ok.)
The name Zephaniah (Hebrew -- Tsephan-yah) means "Yahweh hides" or "Yahweh has hidden."
Zephaniah prophesied around 625 B.C., which makes him a contemporary of Jeremiah. Zeph. 1:1 identifies him as the son of Cushi, the son of Gedaliah, the son of Amariah, the son of Hezekiah, during the reign of Josiah son of Amon king of Judah. Many scholars believe that the "Hezekiah" referred to here, was King Hezekiah of the royal House of David, and one of Judah's most righteous kings. When Hezekiah died, it was Zephaniah's great uncle, Manasseh, and not his great grandfather, Amariah, who ascended the throne. Manasseh became the most corrupt king in Judah's history, reversing all the gains his father had made. He is also thought to be the king responsible for putting Isaiah to death.
But back to Zephaniah. Since his name means "hidden," many scholars believe that it refers to him having been "hidden" from Manasseh's atrocities. Others, however, insist this is not possible due to a lack of time from the days of King Hezekiah to the birth of Zephaniah.
Zephaniah's prophecy takes place during the reign of Josiah, the last good king that Judah had. However, like the reforms of Hezekiah, it appears that the hearts of the people are not really in Josiah's reforms. When hearts remain unchanged, outward improvements cannot last. Josiah, a devout man, does his best to get the nation back on the right track, so God promises not to bring judgment upon the land of Judah during his lifetime. It will be coming though, and the time is nearing. Zephaniah's prophecy deals with God's judgment upon His own people, followed by descriptions of divine judgment upon the surrounding nations, and finally a section dealing with the future hope of salvation under the Messiah which will be enjoyed by a remnant of the people.
Because of his stern denunciations of the sins of the people and his impassioned cries for repentance, some scholars have called him the 'puritan' prophet. And, taking a hint from Zeph. 1:12, artists of the Middle Ages represented Zephaniah as the man with the lamp, searching Jerusalem for sinners to bring them to punishment.
Below are the last names of families and individuals responsible for bringing food this Wednesday. Please bring two of the following: salad, side dish, dessert.)
PLEASE BE FAITHFUL IN THIS! It is a wonderful fellowship and worship opportunity!!!
Sign up on the table in the narthex or call the church office.
Pay in the office or put your payment in the offering plate, but make sure it is CLEARLY MARKED "For POINSETTIA".
You can take them home with you after worship on Christmas Day!
UNMARKED BLUE ENVELOPE CONTRIBUTIONS ARE GOING TO THE BUILDING EXPANSION PROGRAM
If you'd like it to go to the DCE fund you need to mark it for that! Please make sure you mark the ENVELOPE clearly for the DCE PROGRAM!
DO YOU HAVE A KROGER CARD? ENROLL IT IN THE COMMUNITY REWARDS PROGRAM!!!
Register it online www.krogercommunityrewards.com and have it swiped each time you shop to earn money for Little Lambs.